THE STAND – CHATBOT CHURCH

real-robots-hand-with-ancient-bible-concepts-of-artificial-int

Subject: THE CHATBOT & THE CHURCH

Inevitable, was it not my fellow Christians, that artificial intelligence, the so-called AI would step into the pulpit?

This people-replacer, so say the experts, can be either friend or foe. It can either be an aid to the pastor in terms of preparation and time, like the concordance, the wrap-opt, the microphone, and existing sophisticated bible research software; or say the foes, AI can actually write the sermon for the pastor. If the sermon originates from a nonhuman source, why bother to go to church at all?

The potentiality for AI use can be addictive to any pastor, to any Christian preparing materials looking for a shortcut, unwilling to invest the time for real human preparation, a God-required responsibility of any pastor, at least to this point. It is, in the words of one Jared Bridges, where:

AI IS COMING FOR YOUR PASTOR!

The real problem occurs when this brand-new technology doesn’t merely aid the pastor in doing his responsible preaching, but instead does it for him! To be sure, AI indeed saves time, and to some, that saved preparation time can allow the pastor to “reroute that time to other ministry goals.”

One pastor stated:

‘When I need examples or applications for a sermon, I go to ChatGPT for ideas.” Having been called upon generative AI can produce applications for a sermon, not from a mind and heart dedicated to the things of the Lord but from the code base and algorithm of the AI chatbot itself. So, the question may be, is the chatbot born again, has the chatbot experienced salvation, is the chatbot led and influenced in preparing the materials by the Holy Spirit, does the chatbot have a soul, does the chatbot pray and seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit before it tells the pastor what to say?

So then, if any pastor, any preacher was to use AI methodology in sermon preparation, in outline, priorities, applications, and illustrations, that is a shortcut which allows them to avoid hard work, the hard work of preparation, the pouring of a spiritually led, Holy Spirit led heart and mind to the testimony to be given to those who hear. Says the scripture, study to show yourself approved, laymen and pastor.

Study don’t shortcut.

Be a workman or woman for God. WORK! Work in preparation for the delivery of the sacred Word of God to a congregation entrusted to you. Then and only then will that workman, the Lord’s workman never be ashamed of anything written or prepared, delivered in the power of the gospel to those who hear. There are no shortcuts in the work of the Lord, NONE!

The more AI is used, the more a pastor trusts a soul-less AI with known biases to interpret the meaning of the Word of God. By its very title, ARTIFICIAL, much of what AI produces is indeed soul-
human being nor does it contain the real wisdom, love, and emotional impact of the Holy Spirit. There is absolutely no way that a chatbot can interpret the real meaning, the real spirituality of the Word of God, NO WAY!

But that doesn’t stop the founders of Pastors.ai, or ChatGPT, or SermonAI among others. They continue to produce materials, outlines, suggestions, illustrations, and applications drawn from sources everywhere and unknown. But the sites always produce the following disclaimer:

‘Since an AI generates these thesis statements and outlines, please use them with caution. Notably, AI likes to make things up so don’t trust anything it says at face value.”

So, that is the bottom line. In sermon preparation, pastor, AI is untrustworthy, and should not be taken at face value, so perhaps the real issue is not don’t trust it, butt he real issue is:

DON’T USE IT!

To be sure, AI can write sermons. They can do the work of a pastor however worthy or trustworthy. In fact, with sermon.ai, the sermon it can write for the pastor is written at the level of an honorary doctorate, so they say. In fact, AI has the capability of writing that very sermon in a different voice. It uses the illustration of voicing that sermon in the voice of none other than:

BILLY GRAHAM

Can you believe that? If I were Franklin Graham of the Billy Graham organization, I would get the lawyers ready to stop that nonsense. So, my fellow Christians, do we want a sermon prepared by a machine or a human being empowered by the Holy Spirit of God, which? AI simply cannot do the soul transforming work required of a real sermon honoring our Lord. Machine sermons cannot fully bless a congregation and this shortcut for the pastor severely curtails his own spiritual development. Lose-lose, don’t you think?

There are no shortcuts in the work of the Lord. We need to fight the fight to the end, run the race to the finish line, press on for the prize, work for the night is coming, study to show ourselves approved, and in all of that, in the call of our Lord, there are no:

SHORTCUTS.

We the Christians, the congregations must hold our preachers to a much higher standard, a standard which is set and strengthened by a heart generated by love and grace and not generative AI, not generated by a prompt. We need heart-open pastors, not automated ones, not spokesmen weak in the flesh but mighty in the scriptures. We need the power of the Holy Spirit in sermons, not the applications and prompts of AI.

Another sign of the end times, don’t you think?

So, pastor, we your congregations, say study to show yourself approved, be a workman rightly dividing the word of truth. Spend the time in the book and the things of the Lord and teach us sermon after sermon of HIS faith, hope, and love.

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